April 16, 2013
Last week's ranking in parentheses
1. Braves (1): Evan Gattis keeps hitting. The Braves outscored the Nationals 18-5 in impressive sweep.
2. Giants (8): Hunter Pence looks primed for a big season.
3. Nationals (3): Davey Johnson says this will be his last season, regardless.
4. Tigers (7): Strong starts by Anibal Sanchez and Justin Verlander helped the Tigers take two of three in Oakland. Prince Fielder is locked and loaded.
5. Athletics (4): Yoenis Cespedes on the DL with an injury to his left hand. The A's needed him to win a year ago.
6. Rangers (6): A.J. Pierzynski returns to Chicago wearing a new uniform. They led the majors in runs last year but start the third week of the season ranked 16th as they play without Josh Hamilton and Michael Young.
7. Cardinals (9): Shelby Miller is picking up where a healthy Chris Carpenter would have left off.
8. Diamondbacks (11): Held opponents to two runs or fewer six times in first 12 games.
9. Reds (5): Joey Votto is the anti-modern slugger. He had 20 walks before he hit his first home run.
10. Dodgers (2): No Zack Greinke for two months, no consistent run production for the first two weeks of the season.
11. Orioles (10): Just hanging in there so far.
12. Rockies (12): The only team in the majors that had out-homered the Braves through Sunday. Snowy weather in Denver could take them out of their groove.
13. Red Sox (16): Add Clay Buchholz to your list of Cy Young candidates. And John Farrell as the front-runner for AL Manager of the Year.
14. Phillies (18): A start in Miami might have been just what was ordered for Doc Halladay. Can he build from Sunday's win?
15. Royals (20): Holding their own during power outage. They out-homered only the Marlins out of the gate. Alex Gordon, Salvador Perez, Eric Hosmer and Mike Moustakas were homerless in 168 at-bats through Monday.
16. Yankees (22): Late-spring additions Vernon Wells and Travis Hafner are helping keep Pinstripes afloat while Derek Jeter, Curtis Granderson and Mark Teixeira inch closer to returning.
17. Rays (14): Lack of run production has fans calling for Wil Myers, but he's homerless with Triple-A Durham.
18. Blue Jays (17): R.A. Dickey looked like himself on Saturday night, the first time since trade.
19. Mets (23): Baseball's best surprise so far, thanks to young gun Matt Harvey and homer-hitting catcher John Buck.
20. Pirates (25): Great week against the Reds and Diamondbacks with Clint Hurdle's bullpen taking a big step forward.
21. Indians (19): Justin Masterson hasn't allowed a run since opening day and gave up only one then in Toronto.
22. White Sox (15): Big effort by Jake Peavy to stop the team's five-game losing streak. Last in the majors in walks and on-base percentage, through Sunday, and now without second baseman Gordon Beckham. Tyler Flowers and Jeff Keppinger are off to troubling starts.
23. Angels (13): Outscored 10-9 by the Astros in weekend series.
24. Mariners (21): Split a low-scoring, tough four-game series against the Rangers after dropping two of three to the Astros.
25. Brewers (27): Kyle Lohse has been very solid in his two starts after an abbreviated spring.
26. Cubs (26): Cold weather has sent Alfonso Soriano into a deep freeze. Three Michael Bowden wild pitches Sunday added to an ongoing bullpen nightmare.
27. Astros (29): Chris Carter and Marwin Gonzalez have awakened the lineup. No 0-3 pitcher has done better work than Philip Humber, who has received only one run of support in three starts.
28. Twins (24): Longing for Metrodome because of spring snow.
29. Marlins (28): Rookie Jose Fernandez looked terrific in two starts.
30. Padres (30): Lineup could not afford to lose Carlos Quentin on top of the suspended Yasmani Grandal and injured Chase Headley, but Quentin is lucky he didn't get more than eight games for charging the mound after being hit by Greinke.
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